Why Communication is Your #1 Asset in Business
The importance and fundamental role of communication skills in business can’t be overstated. While there is a myriad of skills required to be successful, communication firmly stands above the rest. While it can be easy to get caught up in the operations side of things without the skills to create, develop, advertise, sell, and manage time and resources, a business would be hindered in generating revenue. It’s even easier to forget the foundation effective communication has on all the skills listed and many more in the day-to-day operations of all departments within a business.
Without proper communication skills, neither your staff nor your customers will grasp the full scope of what your business can do for them. Whether in-person conversations, over the phone, or online, communication skills are the basis for any forward movement. Let’s dive into why possessing high-level communication skills will be the asset your business strives for.
What are Business Communications Skills?
Simply put, business communications involve the processes and practices used to convey information to employees, clients, and more including internal communications among departments and staff and external communication to clients and customers through closing deals and your company marketing efforts.
A successful business uses effective communication to build unmatched trust and emotional bonds with its customers. The combination of trust and the bond formed between business and customer drives customers to return again and again. Aside from external customers, effective internal communication makes your staff confident in your company’s direction, motivated to produce, and feel valued since they know management is more than willing to listen and respond to what people are saying.
Remember those sales skills that seem to tie together with the revenue gain we spoke of earlier? Well, any business owner or employee who fails to communicate effectively with others in the business space throws all those skills away and will cause a rapid decline in revenue and potential growth of your business. This makes strong communication skills essential for any business or industry to succeed.
How to Build Upon Your Communication Skills
- Focus on Being Clear and Concise
Communication is often characterized as good or bad by choice of words spoken or written. Not necessarily how detailed the words are, but how clear, concise, and to the point the word choices of the speaker or writer are.
Clarity in as few words as possible is the key to effective communication. You should pre-define your goals, laying out specifically what you want to say and the purpose of each communication to engage your audience most efficiently while not including unnecessary information.
- Be an Active Listener
As much as speaking or writing has to do with communication skills, listening might have an even greater pull. If you don’t listen and absorb what someone else is communicating to you, there’s no way you could effectively communicate back. Start by always giving your undivided attention to whoever is speaking or writing.
If you don’t understand what someone said in full detail, ask for clarification right away. This way you don’t leave a conversation with any miscommunication that may catch up to you down the road. Always encourage input and feedback from others in meetings and one-on-ones to keep track of important topics, but keep in mind not to interrupt someone else.
- Increase Your Awareness of Nonverbal Communication
Nonverbal communication often can say more than any combination of words. Our faces, bodily gestures, and our overall look at a given moment tell the story of how each of us is feeling. Nonverbal communication is shown to be 65% – 93% more impactful than any spoken word.
No matter your position or job, being adept at nonverbal cues is key to building your communication skills for the long term. People that may not want to voice conflictions or feelings will show it through shrugging their shoulders or crossing their arms for example. Being aware of body language will give you cues on how you should proceed. Aside from picking up on cues, you should always use a combination of verbal and nonverbal communication that supports each other to get the right message across.
Benefits of Effective Business Communication
- Increased Company Growth and Productivity
The most significant effect good communication skills have on a business is the increased potential to see returns across the board from various investments. Business goals should always be aligned with ROI increase. If you and your staff lack communication skills, you could see a collapse of a return on any investment. Possessing good communication skills doesn’t solely apply itself to monetary investments. They also apply to staff and time investments. When your employees know their specific roles, tasks, and obligations, they can apply themselves fully to their work, making your business more productive.
- Boosted Employee Morale
Effective communication not only boosts the productivity of your employees. It also improves the overall morale of your staff. Turnover is never good for business and a lack of solid communication within a business will lead to that as employees begin to feel secrets are kept diminishing trust. On the flip side, when employees are informed and kept in the loop of information, they develop higher levels of trust in your business because all team members know what is going on at your business. Without the presence of tension caused by miscommunication from your staff, they can focus on their work.
- Improved Customer Satisfaction
Just as communication skills have a direct effect on employee morale, they also play a role in customer satisfaction levels. When internal communication is fine-tuned, it spills over to your customers, which builds trust and loyalty for your business. Customers don’t like false or conflicting information given to them by different company reps which can increase your churn rate, something no business wants. Communication cohesion among internal departments fosters the same between customers and rep, naturally improving customer satisfaction.
- Reinforce Branding Efforts
You and your company are constantly giving away information, both in private and public communications. Even if you don’t realize it, your communication skills are on display around the clock. Effective communications help you and your business align different communication channels into one steady message. Doing so removes the confusion from customers and staff who might receive mixed messages otherwise. Once you identify how you want to speak to those outside and inside your business, you can define a communications strategy that reinforces your branding.
There are many benefits a good set of communication skills brings to you as an individual and your business. From streamlining communication channels, lifting employee morale, boosting the satisfaction of customers, and ensuring branding are consistent, communication is the key to business success. It’s the foundation for all things good coming to your business!